Tuesday, July 26, 2011

NFL Cut Reactions - Tuesday 7/26/11

First real football news of the new year has started pouring in today as teams start making cuts to get themselves in position to be under the salary cap.  Offensive lines have been the hardest hit so far.

I'm using the list they have running here at football outsiders because I am just one man and can't run everything down myself and provide analysis.  Going to be relying on others often in these first few weeks of free agency because I just won't have the time to track down all of the information while also commenting on what goes on.

Anyways, onto the cuts.  They are listed alphabetically by cut team and in no other real order.  Just because he is listed first doesn't mean that I'm in any way saying that Derek Anderson was the most important player cut on the list....

Derek Anderson - QB - Former Arizona Cardinal - Derek Anderson is out in Arizona, and this is only news because of the atrocity that is the Pro Bowl voting system.  If Anderson had never somehow made the Pro Bowl after his just good season in 2007, this wouldn't even be news that he was being cut because he wouldn't have signed anywhere after Cleveland.  Any team who signs him will be wasting a roster spot.

Gerald Hayes - LB - Former Arizona Cardinal - Hayes was once a decent player in Arizona, but he had some injury issues and has declined.  He's 30 years old and a backup linebacker, it's no surprise they cut him to save his 4.25 million cap hit.

Marion Barber - RB - Former Dallas Cowboy - Barber getting cut is somewhat big news.  It saves the Cowboys 4.75 million in salary cap space, so it's hard to argue with them making the maneuver even though he is a solid player.  They have two other good running backs on the roster with Felix Jones and Tashard Choice, so Barber was a bit of a luxury for 4.75 million.  He's not well rounded enough to be a full time starter in the NFL, but some other team will sign him as a short yardage or change of pace back and do a good job.

This is mostly going to be news for fantasy football purposes, as it will changes the backfield situation for two different teams.  Felix Jones and Tashard Choice both move up fantasy draft boards and rankings because there are just more carries to go around.  One of Jones or Choice should take over the primary back role there in Dallas, and won't have Barber to vulture touchdowns.  Barber will move on to another team and likely take a huge bite out of that running backs touchdown totals, lowering their value.

Marc Colombo and Leonard Davis - Offensive Line - Former Dallas Cowboys - Cutting both of these aging lineman saves the Cowboys a total of 8.4 million dollars against the cap.  They used to be part of a solid right side of the Cowboys' line, but now they really weren't worth their cap hits for this year.  They are both still good enough to catch on somewhere else, just not at what they were scheduled to get paid this year.

Roy Williams - Wide Receiver - Former Dallas Cowboy - Roy Williams has been more way hype than production since he was drafted by the Lions in 2004.  He has only eclipsed the thousand yard receiving mark one time in his seven seasons in the league and that was also the only year he played all sixteen games.  He's just not good.  The Cowboys save 5 million by cutting him and free up playing time for some of their younger receivers.  Some team will likely make the mistake of paying Roy Williams way more than he's worth, but I wouldn't want him on my team.

Nick Barnett - Linebacker - Former Green Bay Packer - I've always felt like Barnett was a solid linebacker, but he has ended the season on injured reserve in two of the last three years and would just be a backup in Green Bay this year.  He was scheduled to make almost 6 million total this year, and cutting him saves the Packers that amount in real cash plus 4 millions against the cap.  He'll catch on somewhere else for like two or so million dollars and be a decent starter this year.

Tully Banta-Cain - Linebacker - Former New England Patriot - Banta-Cain isn't a great pass rusher but he is fairly solid and this is news because he was the only good pass rusher the Patriots had.  This saves the Pats a few million against the cap (I can't find a good number at this point) but I think it might be a Patriots being shrewd maneuver.  Banta-Cain just had abdominal surgery last week and likely won't be back until after training camps have let out, so it might be hard to him to find another team.  I think the Patriots might try to bring him back at a reduced price when the season is starting.

Rich Seubert and Shaun O'Hara - Offensive Line - Former New York Giants - These two cuts hit home for me as a Giants fan, but I get why both had to go.  They are both trying to come back from injuries this year, and Seubert would have started the season on the PUP list anyway.  This only really makes one whole on the line at center for O'Hara, as it seemed like one William Beatty or Mitch Petrus would be ready to step in as a starter for Seubert.  These cuts save the Giants a total of 5.3 million against the cap, and they are still over the cap after these cuts.  Bigger cuts are coming from the Giants roster soon.

That's it for now.  I will be sure to update this if any other news comes out later tonight.

Shawn Andrews - Offensive Line - Former New York Giant - Andrews was expected to be released because of his high cap number for this year, and tweeted earlier this evening that he couldn't work out a contract renegotiation with the Giants.  Cutting him saves them 7.5 million in cap space, and they might still attempt to bring him back at a lower price.  It's not really a major move, as Andrews couldn't be counted on to start anyways.  He's a luxury but not a guy who can be counted on at this point in his career with his back issues.

Be sure to check out all my Fantasy Football draft prep on the site including today's column about fantasy bargains on the Buccaneers here.

-Fred "Big Derf" Tobin

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